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Each month, receive tips on the top jobs needed in your garden as well as a wealth of information on a range of gardening topics. From sowing seeds to picking fruit, each month get access to information on the care and maintenance of your flowerbeds, vegetable plot and lawn. As with your own gardening diary, the journal is split into separate sections, each covering a different area of garden care.

Friday, 4 November 2016

This Month in your Garden - November

“No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees, no fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds - November!"

No! by Thomas Hood (1799-1845)

Perhaps it was bleaker in those days or is it just we keen gardeners like to make sure we keep November colourful.

There is a long list of flowers that can still brave the month and starting at ‘A’ you can have Aconitum – Monkshood with tall, spiky flowers, Agapanthus, the African Lily, Alstroemeria, the Peruvian variety with its long lasting flowers, and asters, the Michaelmas Daisies with around 180 species bringing a mass of different colours to borders; and don’t forget the Helleborus or Christmas rose with its delicate flowers.

Lawn Care Guide - November

Keep your mower running

In some areas you may well find you still need to mow given mild weather through October. Don’t cut the grass too short. Grass doesn’t stop growing even in winter months and mild spells could mean the mowing regime continues into December. If the air temperature is above 5º C the grass will continue to grow, albeit slowly.

Heading through autumn towards December the mowing frequency will be reduced from twice a week to once a week and on down to once a month in November and December, unless of course the temperature has remained mild and the ground dry. Even then this final mowing should only cut the top twenty-five percent off the grass to keep it tidy and collect up any fallen leaves.

Lawn Care: Questions and Answers

Q. I am aiming to keep my garden organic and have done with fertilisers for the vegetables and flower beds. My lawn though hasn’t recovered from drought in the summer. Is there anything I can use in November or do I have to wait until spring?

The Vegetable Plot - November

May the force be with you

Think about your crop rotation plan as you dig and weed the vegetable border. It helps to divide the plot into sections. Now is the time to force rhubarb, chicory and seakale and to lift Jerusalem artichokes and parsnips for storing.

If you can sow under glass, in a frame or greenhouse, try carrots, onions and radishes, French beans, lettuces, mustard and cress.

Plant fruit trees or if space is limited why not grow some standards on a patio for a crop of apples, cherries, pears and plums next year?  You can lift and store leeks in a bucket of compost in the greenhouse or shed. They are best lifted after a good frost.

The Big Glut Recipe - November

Mushroom and parsnip rösti pie

November calls for warming, winter fare, stuffed baked potatoes on bonfire night – and pies. This one taken from Anna Jones/BBC Food is hearty but light.


  • olive or rapeseed oil
  • 750g/1lb 10oz mixed mushrooms (preferably portobello, chestnut and wild mushrooms), roughly chopped into chunks
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • small bunch thyme, leaves picked
  • 2 red onions, sliced
  • 2 carrots, finely chopped
  • 250g/9oz swede, finely chopped
  • 200ml/7fl oz white wine or vegetable stock